GERMAN MINISTER VISITS GHANA TO DEEPEN COOPERATION.
The Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dr. Gerd Muller has arrived in Ghana for a two day
visit from Sunday, 10th February to Tuesday, 12th February, 2019.
As part of the visit, the Minister for Employment and Labour Relations, Hon Ignatius Baffour Awuah met with the German Minister at the newly established Ghanaian-German Centre for Jobs, Migration and Reintegration where both discussed areas of cooperation between the MELR and the GIZ.
On arrival at the Centre, the delegation on both sides were taken round the Centre by the German Project Manager (Ghana,) Mr. David Tettey, who expressed appreciation to the German Minister for the joint collaboration. The Project Manager, in a photo exhibition also highlighted some of the achievements of the Centre since its establishment in 2017.
In a closed door meeting, the Project Manager arranged for four (4) returnees from Germany who are currently beneficiaries of the Centre to share their testimonials on the dangers and the lack of ignorance on the part of the youth who migrate illegally through the Mediterranean Sea.
The returnees had been assisted by the Centre by way of either receiving training to land a job, invest into infrastructure development of other communities, start a new trade and or reintegrate with their families among others.
On his part during interactions, Dr. Gerd Muller, the German Minister, announced that his country is ready to first and foremost deepen collaboration with Ghana by supporting 25,000 young people with training skills in Technical Vocational and Educational Techniques (TVET). This, according to him, would provide and generate jobs for the local people, especially those in the rural areas.
In response, the Minister for Employment and Labour Relations, Hon. Ignatius Baffour Awuah thanked the German Minister for the great initiative to create jobs for the local people. He stated the attempt is part of efforts to strengthen one of Ghana Governments Priority areas to resolve the issue of unemployment in the country. Hon. Baffour added that this is also one of the reasons why the current government has introduced the Free Compulsory Basic Education even to the Senior High Level.
Hon. Baffour further emphasized that Ghana will want to have a one stop point like a Labour Complex where all labour related issues would be addressed at a time. He was also quick to point out that the youth requires the requisite skills to meet local demand, noting there is the need to create and ensure a decent and safe working atmosphere. He said “if there are jobs in our local areas, people will not migrate”.
The Hon. Minister also called for further cooperation in the area of Pensions where Ghanaian migrant will link up with their home countries so that their pension monies could be invested for them. He recommended that the pension’s benefits could be used as guarantee or collateral to secure some accommodation for migrants on their return to Ghana.
Currently, the Ghanaian-German Centre for Jobs, Migration and Reintegration has been working with the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations (MELR) in area of Labour Migration.
The Centre undertakes several activities including counselling of Labour migrants, public awareness creation and education on the work of the Centre, needs assessment for integrating assistance, data collection, among others.
In their cooperation with the MELR, the Centre has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for which a road map has been developed.
The MoU is to address issues of local employment creation, ensuring safe migration pathways for migrant labour, and facilitate the reintegration of returnees to assist them settle and find jobs or engage in income generating activities.